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Debt ceiling drama continues: 5 things to know today in Asia

Debt ceiling debate still front and center, weather back in the headlines, and markets in wait and see mode. Here are some of the things people in markets are talking about.

Debt Ceiling Drama Continues

This time on Twitter, of course. U.S. President Donald Trump took to the social media platform on Thursday morning in the U.S. to blame other leaders in the Republican party for the debt ceiling “mess.” In a series of posts, the president said he asked Republican leaders, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan, to include a measure to raise the U.S. debt ceiling in a popular veterans bill, but that the two leaders decided against it. He wasn’t happy, blaming them for passing on an “easy” solution. Investors are starting to take heed.

Weather Back in the Headlines

While the Asian markets re-opened for trading following Typhoon Hato, another storm half a world away  is disrupting markets: Hurricane Harvey. West Texas Intermediate futures took a beating as forecasters are now predicting the tropical storm will strengthen into a Category 3 hurricane when it makes landfall in an area flush with oil refineries and natural gas plants.

Stocks

All major U.S. indexes were lower on Thursday amid the debt ceiling debate and the beginning of this year’s economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Losses were small, with the S&P 500 Index falling 0.21 percent. In the bond market, 10-year Treasury yields rose slightly after falling to their lowest level since late June earlier this week. Gold turned lower, falling 0.3 percent.

Futures

With Typhoon Hato downgraded, markets were open again in Hong Kong. S&P/ASX 200 futures are trading slightly lower ahead of the open, while Nikkei 225 futures are sitting in positive territory. The Hang Seng Index is trading slightly higher in the futures market, while the MSCI Asia Pacific Index edged lower after erasing a gain of as much as 0.3 percent.

Coming Up…

In Japan, consumer price data is due out this morning, with economic forecasts compiled by Bloomberg looking for national July CPI numbers to come in 0.4 percent higher on a year-over-year basis and Tokyo 0.3 percent higher. We’ll also get CPI and export data from Vietnam. Otherwise, all eyes are now on speeches from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and ECB President Mario Draghi scheduled for Friday.

 

Sent by Bloomberg

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